Being a landlord is not easy but it just got a lot more complicated. The stress and anxiety can be overwhelming but there are ways to cope. Listen in as LMHC Nicole Mosey discusses ways to cope with difficult times.


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Show Transcription:

Eric Worral: (00:00)
Welcome back to another episode of RentPrep for Landlords. It’s episode #305 and this week we are talking with a licensed mental health counselor by the name of Nicole Mosey. She is somebody that I actually went to high school with and just kind of reconnected with talk about a little bit on the podcast, how we kind of randomly stumbled back into each other’s lives via daycares and local grocery stores. But I thought she would be a really helpful person to have on the podcast right now because if you’re anything like me, you’re probably feeling a little bit stressed right now because there’s just so many things to consider, especially if you’re somebody who has a full-time job you have rental properties, maybe you have a family, you’re working from home, you are feeling the walls kind of coming in a little bit, you know, closing in on you as you’re trying to manage a new normal because of this pandemic. So I really appreciated this podcast with Nicole. I certainly was writing down some mental notes as she was talking. And I think you guys were really appreciate it too. So without further ado, let’s get to the podcast.

Voice Over: (01:05)
Welcome to the RentPrep for Landlords podcast and now your host, Eric Worral.

Eric Worral: (01:10)
Hey everybody! We have a special podcast episode today. I was kind of sitting at home thinking about what to do for the podcast and he was thinking about the mental health that I’ve been hearing a lot of people are deteriorating with and having a tough time with because of the COVID-19. So I thought it’d be great to have an expert on the podcast. So I am joined today by Nicole Mosey and forgive me, I don’t know all of your credentials Nicole, so you could tell me, but Nicole is of CORE Mental Health Counseling and she is professional. She’s going to help us out. So how are you doing today Nicole? I’m doing great. Thanks for having me. So help me out. What are the credentials for it? Cause I feel like there’s so many different types of professionals in this area.

Eric Worral: (01:47)
What is it that you do specifically? And then like, how does that deviate from like, say like there’s counselors, mental health counselors. I mean, there’s so many different, like psychologists, therapists, everything. So can you break that down a little bit here?

NIcole Mosey: (01:59)
So I’m a licensed mental health counselor. The abbreviation is LMHC. It’s really a state-regulated. So each state has their own credentials really for, you know, social workers are licensed professional counselors and things like that. Some, a licensed mental health counselor in the state of New York and I own and have founded the CORE Mental Health Counseling, which is in downtown Buffalo.

Eric Worral: (02:26)
Okay. and for listeners who have been listening for a while, they know that I’m from Buffalo, New York. So I actually know him, Nicole from high school, and I think the one day I was walking in the grocery store and this was before all the pandemic stuff. I saw ya. And then I saw you like a few weeks later, it turns out our kids go to the same daycare. So as usual in Buffalo, small world. Yeah, definitely. Yeah. But what I wanted to talk to you today about is just kind of answering some questions cause I know that our audience has a specific kind of set of anxieties and issues that they’re dealing with. And I thought it might be good to have a professional come in and at the same time because of this pandemic, I think a lot of us are dealing with a lot of the same worries, anxieties, frustrations and things that are going on, especially from working from home. And we’re just gonna kind of talk through some of that. What have you found, cause I know that you’re still continuing to practice, you’re doing telemedicine and you’re talking to people and what is your general, just kind of overview on the impact of COVID-19 and the impact on people mentally? Like what have you been seeing and hearing?

NIcole Mosey: (03:29)
Oh, well, it’s definitely taking a toll on the community in the world. There’s so many different challenges that we’re seeing take place. Really from the basic needs getting met of people, which is something that I wanted to start with. You know, like food, shelter finances, you know, all of the basics. And then extending on to connected you know, connectivity interactions with others. You know, there in the mental health, you know, how everybody’s feeling, you know, all of all of it and how connected it is. I think it’s having a huge impact. And I read an article recently about the amount of PTSD, which is post-traumatic stress disorder. And how in the SARS epidemic it was almost up to 30% after that. You know, the people that are impacted dealing with anxiety, depression related to this, what we would consider a traumatic event.

Eric Worral: (04:30)
How would somebody like, let’s say they’re struggling with this, right? And I think this is probably the little bit of a bridge you kinda got across where you might be struggling with this, but you’re thinking like, well, everybody’s struggling with this. It’s tough. Like, how do you determine for yourself, and maybe you can’t because you’re not professional, but like a, if you should be reaching out to somebody because you don’t know if you’re struggling more than you should be, you know, maybe you are having issues with anxiety or PTSD kind of thing. How does someone even supposed to like start that path or self-assessed there?

NIcole Mosey: (05:01)
Well, some of the most common symptoms I would say, which probably unfortunately a lot of people are dealing with are having trouble with sleep, whether it’s excessive sleepiness or waking up a lot during the night. It could be changes in appetite. It could be constant feelings of worry. It could be obsessive thoughts. Watching the news over and over again can be a trigger for a lot of people. It could be sadness. I’m more days than not. It could be flashbacks or memories from other things that could maybe don’t even seem similar. But if it was a core belief that might’ve come up like, I’m, I’m trapped or I’m stuck or I can’t get out, you know, some type of thought process that came up, that type of thing could play out, you know, in this situation many years later with what’s happening right now. So, you know, it’s unfortunate. They’re probably, I would say a lot of people are probably dealing with this to some extent. So it’s trying to figure out how those symptoms are impacting your daily life. So if it’s getting in the way of, if you still have to work and if it’s getting in the way of you maintaining your employment or doing your job, which again is difficult right now. If it’s affecting your relationship if it’s affecting the way that you’re coping in a, maybe a quick relief type of way as opposed to something more effective that you’re used to, those would be signs that you might want to reach out and just get some support. I think there’ll be, can benefit everybody. So, you know, it’s, it’s not a bad thing. And a lot of people said, you know, is it a weird time quote unquote to I do therapy? And I don’t think so at all. I think it makes sense why a two, we’re seeing an influx, you know, of people reaching out and saying, you know, Hey, I need a little help through this. And it’s easy.

Eric Worral: (06:44)
Well, I was going to say, I feel like right now it’s like you have such an easy excuse to reach out cause you’re like, no, I’m not broken. It’s just like this, the outside world’s broken, but can you at least help me manage it? You know, normal time for sure. Yeah. Yeah. I know I’ve gone through it before with a mental health counselor and one of the things that was helpful for me was kind of getting a better understanding of what anxiety is and where it comes from. Cause I’m sure a lot of our listeners are experiencing that. Is that something that you can kind of just, you know, share your professional insights on?

NIcole Mosey: (07:17)
Yeah. So anxiety presents itself in a lot of different ways. You can notice the physical sensations, maybe your hands are sweaty, your heart’s racing trouble focusing, you know, the trouble asleep and things like that. That I mentioned and where it comes from. There’s a genetic component. Sometimes it’s a family gene. Unfortunately that gets passed down. But it also could be environmental. So people being stuck in their houses right now is a total trigger because, you know, we’re not able to practice mindfulness or other types of techniques exercise to the same extent or in the same way. Sometimes. So you know, the, the symptoms can be, you can experience them physically, you can have negative thoughts in your mind. And then the feelings kind of have anxiety and depression increased from there. So you know, I think that the, the situation right now is kind of exacerbating a lot of that for people as well.

Eric Worral: (08:12)
Knowing that people like, you know, maybe not have the usual options that you would have like to go to the gym and workout or something like that. What’s like the number one thing you do is you recommend to somebody if they’re like feeling that kind of creeping in. Is it just really just taking a deep breath and just at least kind of slowing down or, I mean, what would you say?

NIcole Mosey: (08:28)
Yeah, definitely. Debriefing is a big one. If they’re able to do any of the online exercise classes, I think that’s you know, it’s not only then continuing their same routine, but then also the connectedness with people. That’s huge. Any way that they can stay connected. Keeping a schedule at home, you know, if they can say, this time I’m going to start my day. Starting the same routine every day is huge. Keeping yourself immune. So maybe taking vitamins, staying hydrated practicing good sleep hygiene and washing your hands. All the things that they’re telling us. You know, just to stay safe. If you can get fresh air, you know, going outside even in the backyard for a little bit and stay informed but not overwhelmed by the media I would say. You know, or just some small things that we can do to, you know, stay sane during this time.

Eric Worral: (09:17)
Yeah. Yeah. One question that I had written down here is as far as landlords communicating with their tenants and now I don’t expect you to give like advice on what they should say, right? Because it’s a pretty tricky situation because we’re dealing with situations where people can’t pay rent, but then there’s landlords that can’t pay their mortgages and you know, the homes involved finances, all this stuff. So it’s pretty tricky situation. But how would you suggest, because I’m sure from what you do, a lot of what you’ve learned is also how to be a great listener and be able to, you know, have tough conversations with people and be able to listen to them. Do you have any advice for a landlord that may be about to call a tenant that they know probably lost their job because they worked in a restaurant or something like that? I mean, do you have any kind of pointers or tips for them in that situation?

NIcole Mosey: (10:03)
Yeah. Well, first of all, I would say, you know, that’s a very difficult situation. So I feel, you know very empathetic towards that specifically because I can’t imagine first dealing with this for themselves and you know, maybe their own job or, you know, place employment, their own family. And then also you know, if they’re also managing properties and things like that. I, I can’t imagine it not being complex and multifaceted and overwhelming really I think is the best word. So first I would just say that, you know, I’m very empathetic because I can’t imagine having that type of conversation with people right now when everybody is you know, frantic in a way, they’re, they’re stressed, the rules are changing, the laws are changing. It’s hard to keep up with everything that’s going on. So people have become really overwhelmed easily. So I would just say a couple things. One addressing the elephant in the room so, you know, it’s, everybody knows this is what’s going on right now and I think not talking about it or avoiding it is going to make it more complicated. And have the conversation maybe be more conflictual than it needs to be. So really just addressing the elephant in the room. If you can be empathetic toward the tenants or the people that you know, are living in the properties that you’re, you’re managing. I think it goes a long way just to be able to say I hear you. I am feeling it too. I understand a little part of what you may be going through. Just to be able to again, connect and to relate to people is, is huge. It’s hard to really plan for the unknown. So just kind of recognizing that too. Like people don’t know how long this is going to last or what’s going on or you know, all of that kind of stuff. So just kind of being aware that fear is sometimes driving the conversations or the interactions and the relationships. So if we’re able to move at all from that fear-based model to kind of a, a future orientation, I’m thinking about this longterm.

NIcole Mosey: (12:00)
Maybe they’ve been with you for years, maybe this hasn’t come up in the past. Maybe they have paid on time pretty regularly, you know, kind of being open to maybe this shift you know, of this short term, hopefully in the big scheme of things. Obstacle we talk about the wise mind being, you know, between a mash emotional and rational mind. If you can make a decision in the middle and the wise mind, that’s where, you know, things are the most effective. So just kind of letting them know in this time of confusion that there can be some hope for the future for their living environment and their relationship with you as well.

Eric Worral: (12:36)
Okay. That’s really helpful. I love what you’re talking about with the wise mind too and just kinda keeping both of those parts of your brain, kind of aware that, you know, a lot of times right now I think conversations and interactions from become emotionally charged and if you can be aware of that and not bring that kind of conversation to your tenants, it’s probably gonna make that conversation go smoother. To kind of piggyback off of that what would you say for anybody listening who maybe they have a full-time job, they also have these rental properties that they’re managing. They’re worried maybe about what’s going to happen at their job and now they’re working at home and maybe they’ve got a, you know, a significant other or kids and you know, what would you say to somebody who’s trying to balance all this? Like how would you recommend them feeling you know, communication-wise with their family at home and then just dealing with the isolation issues of being stuck at home.

NIcole Mosey: (13:25)
Yeah, so again, it’s so complex because we’re dealing with so many layers, you know, all at the same time. For communication. You know, if there’s this really cool book called the five love languages, I don’t know if anybody’s read it, but you know, if you understand the way that your partner communicates, whether it’s through acts of service, gift-giving quality time together, you know, if you understand what kind of moves or motivates or shows love to each other, I feel like that’s really important. Taking time for yourself going for a walk around the block, even just a small thing, kind of centering yourself and then going back in to have a conversation as opposed to when everybody’s kinda escalated or really on edge can be, can go a really long way I think. And just kind of noticing the small things if you do have a family at home you know, some things might work. We’re building forts lately in our religion, you know, some got one right now. We did some things, you know, you just had to look at the small things and really try to find the pleasure and joy in that kind of stuff because the moments that the kids don’t necessarily know, depending on their age, that all this is going on. So, you know, staying calm for them I think is really helpful as well.

Eric Worral: (14:40)
Yeah. Yeah. That’s great. I love that. For people being impacted by this financially now out for landlords, I probably, most of them at some point are going to have impact from this. There’s a good chance of that if a lot of people are losing jobs going on unemployment, but then they’re, like I was saying to a lot of them have jobs they may be worried about and what’s going on there. I think that for a lot of times investors naturally are very, very financially focused people to begin with because you wouldn’t have gotten into investing if that wasn’t the case. So if they find themselves in the situation where they can’t stop thinking about this. Right. And you had mentioned that earlier, maybe you’re like obsessing, you know, obsessive thought and kind of thing where somebody is thinking constantly about whether it’d be their investment portfolio, their, their rental properties, and they just can’t stop thinking and obsessing about it. Like what would you say to somebody in that situation?

NIcole Mosey: (15:32)
So this is a hard one. I think that this is a skill that takes practice. I would kind of go back to the mindfulness idea here because sometimes it’s okay to not do anything. People often when they’re like highly motivated or like you said, financially focused or they’re on the go, they’re measuring success by their achievements. So it’s going to be really difficult to kind of take a step back during this time and not do you know, or, or do something different, which is again, not doing, like, you don’t have to always cross everything out on the list to feel a sense of peace and calm and happiness. I think it’s going to be lowering the expectations because we really can’t do the same things. I mean, obviously I was mentioning earlier, we’re doing everything on, on teletherapy, but it things take a little bit more time or there’s a little bit of a different dynamic. So just kind of being gentle with yourself I think, and not keeping your expectations so extreme or so high that you’re not meeting them because then you’re going to feel like you’re failing and you’re not going to be able to continue to see the small steps that you’re taking forward. So, you know, I would just say it’s okay to go slow and you know, not have to do as much as maybe you were doing before.

Eric Worral: (16:47)
Well, I’m going to make sure that my wife doesn’t listen to this podcast because I don’t want her to hear the last five minutes of stuff you just said. That’s you. She was talking about you, Eric. As far as like what was I gonna say? Like resources for somebody, right. So obviously they could connect with you or another licensed mental health counselor, but do you have any kind of like a top of the list resources? If somebody is listening to this and you’re like, you know what, I might be struggling with this. Like where do they go? Where should they start?

NIcole Mosey: (17:19)
Yeah. So I just wanted to mention briefly, there are local and national suicide prevention lines. So you know, knowing that there there is hope and that this is a temporary struggle because we don’t want to see an increase in suicides and things like that. So just kind of knowing that there’s crisis lines I think is, is the first thing that I wanted to mention.

Eric Worral: (17:45)
No, I was going to say with that, and sorry to cut you off, what if a landlord has a concern about a tenant in that area? Is there like a gentle way to give that information or do you have any suggestions there? Cause I could see, you know, if a landlord knows that their tenant just lost their job and they’ve always been somebody who kind of seemed on the rocks suggest.

NIcole Mosey: (18:07)
Yeah, that’s tough. I, I’m open to talking about mental health. I know it’s, there’s still sometimes a stigma, so it can be really tough, but it’s been on the news a lot lately. So I would just say, Hey, how are you feeling? You know, it can be a very simple open-ended question to check in with somebody. I think it goes a really long way. The myth is that asking someone about suicide is going to plant that seed in their head. It does not do that. It just opens the door for them to communicate and reach out for help. So I think the basic thing to do is genuinely ask someone how they’re doing. And then, you know, you can give them resources, which would in our area would be crisis services. I know that they’re probably inundated with calls right now, but in a typical year they would call the person, you can have the person call them, they would ask all the questions about suicide that I would ask in an individual session for free over the phone. And then if they were worried about their safety, they could go out to the person’s house as well. So there’s a lot of resources related to that depending on your area. Crisis services as the one in Buffalo, New York.

Eric Worral: (19:13)
Okay. And then if, let’s say it’s just where it’s not quite that dire, but they’re just saying, you know, I think I might be having some issues with anxiety or depression. Are there any general resources that you’d recommend for that or what would be a first step you think for somebody?

NIcole Mosey: (19:30)
Yeah. So you know, this time is very unique. So I would suggest trying something that maybe you haven’t tried before related to meditation or mindfulness. On our Facebook page I posted Jon Kabat Zinn and Deepak Chopra and both of them this week are having free meditations online that you could just basically you just listen and they guide you through relaxation, decreased anxiety, and they have things like that, that are available at our fingertips right now, which I think is amazing. I also posted and saw a virtual race, which I thought was really kind of cool. So if you can’t participate, you know, in a run that you may be, we’re looking forward to you know, grieving that process. But also I’m seeing these unique ways that people are connecting and you know, coping online. So, you know, following some local mental health professionals or our Facebook page if you wanted to. And just to try and get some tips about what other people are doing and finding something that you might have interest in as well.

Eric Worral: (20:32)
Yeah. Yeah. The like a lot of people, I think I’ve kinda gotten into the apps too that they have. I know Headspace has some free stuff that they’re doing right now where you can do some guided meditations that normally would’ve cost money. And a good that I read, I don’t know if you’ve read it, but I was called 10% Happier by, I think the author’s name is Dan Harris. Have you heard of that one?

NIcole Mosey: (20:55)
I have not. I’m going to write it down though.

Eric Worral: (20:57)
He was like a national broadcaster on like NBC or CBS, you know, like top of the line. But he had like a, he like I had a panic attack on live air kind of thing and just couldn’t talk at all. A froze up and it turned out he had PTSD and all these issues and kind of started using meditation. And the thing I like about that book is I think it’s a good one for somebody who’s like, Oh, meditation, I’m not into that kind of thing. Or that’s like too fluffy for me. You know, that kind of thing. Really like take, goes at it with like a kind of like almost a sarcastic biting kind of a viewpoint. And it’s funny to read, but very relatable, which I liked. So

NIcole Mosey: (21:33)
Yeah, I’ll share one too. I didn’t even think of books, but it is a great resource. It’s called Welcoming the Unwelcome, Pema Chödrön I believe. Chödrön, I think that’s how you say her last name. Just really powerful and kind of like leaning into discomfort and that’s kinda what I was talking about before where, you know, it’s okay to kind of feel however you’re feeling about it and, and not trying to push away or, you know, respond in a unhealthy or quick relief ways. So, yeah, there’s definitely some cool books and insight timer is also a really great app that has some free meditations as well. And then you get to pick the length of time on those. So if you’re a beginner and you want to start off with a few minutes, that’s a perfect one to start with for sure.

Eric Worral: (22:15)
Oh, that’s great. So, if somebody’s listening and they want to talk with a professional I understand that, I don’t know if you did this before, but you do telemedicine now. I mean, were you doing it before, by the way, or is this something you started because of the pandemic,

NIcole Mosey: (22:30)
We were doing it before. We’ve seen a, a very large influx in, you know, the people that are doing it almost a hundred percent now of our clients. They’re doing our telemedicine or teletherapy online, I feel very grateful that we already had the system set up and we didn’t have to do a ton of changing of our plan to be able to access as many people as we are.

Eric Worral: (22:52)
How many people you said that are working with you?

Eric Worral: (22:55)
There’s 4 counselors here altogether and then we’re just offering a free 15-minute phone consultation to kind of point people in the right direction. So even if it’s not therapy here, we just want to try to help as much as we can.

Eric Worral: (23:06)
And you say here, so you work with people all over the country is not just something where it has to be local?

NIcole Mosey: (23:11)
Correct. Yeah, there are more leniency regulations right now because of everything that’s going on related to telehealth. We see people, you know, in the state of New York through telehealth and then you know, on a national level as well. But there are some regulations in place so we could kind of go over those or point people in the right direction if we’re not able to help. But like I said, a lot of those regulations are loosening up right now because of the COVID virus.

Eric Worral: (23:40)
Okay. and I will put links to all these resources we’re mentioning right now, but your website, corementalhealthcounseling.org you also mentioned Facebook, I’m assuming people can search that same name on Facebook to find your page if they’re looking for tips and things.

NIcole Mosey: (23:55)
Yep. And Instagram as well. We were working on our social media presence now more than ever. You know, that’s where people are finding us. But our website too has a lot of great tools, a blog and some information as well.

Eric Worral: (24:06)
Okay. Well, I thank you very much. I’m sure a lot of our listeners do as well. It’s a very difficult time and I think people that work in your area of expertise are so highly needed and appreciated at the same time. So I thank you too for your time. Cause I’m sure you’re pretty busy right now, so.

NIcole Mosey: (24:24)
Thanks, Eric! Thinking of you and your family. And like I said, if we can help it, I’ll just let us know. We are available. And you can also book right online so you don’t even have to, it makes it really easy. You know what I mean? The whole,

Eric Worral: (24:34)
Yeah, I’ve been there. It’s awkward calling, like you don’t want to like, it feels really awful and then after you do it you’re like, Oh, that’s fine. And then after an appointment and you’re like, Oh, I feel better. Like that wasn’t a big thing. You know, I think for people to kind of build up in their mind of like, I don’t think this is something I want to do, you know, I’m fine, I’m fine. I can say personally, after doing it, it was some of the best time and money spent that I’ve ever spent.

Eric Worral: (25:01)
So yeah. So if anybody’s out there on the fence and they’re thinking this might be something that they need help with, like, you know, this is a great time to reframe and look at things differently. And maybe do something that you wouldn’t normally do where you can get some help and try to make the best of this time for you, your family and friends.

NIcole Mosey: (25:16)
Yeah, we’re helping all kinds of people. You’re definitely not alone. You just let us know. We’re, we’re definitely all in this together, so let us know what we can do. We’re happy to help for sure.

Eric Worral: (25:27)
All right. Thank you so much, Nicole. I wish you good health and happiness.

NIcole Mosey: (25:31)
Thanks. You as well. Have a great day.

Eric Worral: (25:33)
All right, you too. Bye.

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